After taking a brief hiatus from soap-making this past summer in order to tackle some long overdue home projects and maintenance, I have cranked the soap-making machine back into action! My soap-supplies’ pantry is reorganized and restocked, I’ve rejiggered the website (hope you like it!), and I have been making soap! It feels sooooo good!!
I absolutely love getting to work with such beautiful natural organic ingredients – sumptuous coconut, hemp, olive and sunflower oils; rich and nourishing shea and cocoa butters; and all the amazing essential oils which bring so many wonderful benefits to the soaps, not the least of which for me is the joy of being ensconced in the gorgeous scents while making the soaps. Oh. So. Good!! I have my favorite scents and scent combinations, and it seems that a lot of the people who use our soaps have their favorites as well. I try to pay attention to that and to keep those faves in stock for my wonderful customers.
One of the reasons that I am drawn to soap making is that it presents a fun opportunity to indulge in creativity on a number of fronts while also producing something that we need and use. I passionately enjoy trying out new combinations of color, texture, and scent, and I especially love getting to utilize beautiful and interesting ingredients from the natural world to acheive these result. As I meander along this path of creative botanical wondery, I am learning so much about the incredible powers that plants possess. I am awed each time I decide to try a new ingredient and discover the many benefits of the particular plant as I research how to use it in my soap. So many of the plants we can find all around us – many of which are considered weeds – are a literal treasure chest of medicinal and nutritional benefits. I am enamored of these plants and their amazing properties.
People who know me are probably used to my perennial photos (on the social medias) of emergent mulberries, the first dandelion in the yard, the first yarrow in the pasture, the blossoms on the apricot trees, the flowers on the grasses that produce the delicate and brightly colored dangling fringe, the sunflowers that blanket the roadsides, the juniper berries that suddenly pop to life adorning the trees with a periwinkle blue shawl. All so special, and each year I am struck anew with wide-eyed wonder that the world contains such magic. To be able to utilize some of these beautiful and highly beneficial plants and flowers in my soaps is beyond the pale.
Yesterday, I made my first batch of a soap I’ve been wanting to try for a couple of years. It’s a coconut and olive oil based soap that includes JUNIPER BERRIES!! I got the recipe from a beautiful book, written by Jan Berry, The Nerdy Farm Wife, called Simple and Natural Soapmaking. Her recipes and the information that she shares about the ingredients and making soap are so inspiring.
Juniper berries have a whole host of benefits, including being highly nutritious (and delicious, in my opinion). In aromatherapy, juniper berry essential oil is thought to provide a calming effect and to balance emotions and support mental health. In soap, juniper berries are noted to help with oily skin conditions and acne and eczema. This soap contains ground juniper berries along with juniper berry essential oil. I’m super excited to try it out! If it’s as good as I think it will be, I’ll be adding it to the collection soon!